Thursday, April 19, 2012

"Downfall"

"Downfall". Astounding movie, I really didn't think such a thing could be done. To put a human face on the greatest monsters in living memory, all without loosing sight of the underlying brutality and inhumanism.
The story is excellent and compelling, and so is the acting, especially Bruno Ganz as Adolf Hiltler.

From reviews via Wiki:

With respect to German uneasiness about "humanizing" Hitler, Denby said:[3]
A few journalists in [Germany] wondered aloud whether the "human" treatment of Hitler might not inadvertently aid the neo-Nazi movement. But in his many rants in [the film] Hitler says that the German people do not deserve to survive, that they have failed him by losing the war and must perish – not exactly the sentiments […] that would spark a recruitment drive. This Hitler may be human, but he's as utterly degraded a human being as has ever been shown on the screen, a man whose every impulse leads to annihilation.


After previewing the film, Hitler biographer Sir Ian Kershaw wrote in The Guardian:[4]
Knowing what I did of the bunker story, I found it hard to imagine that anyone (other than the usual neo-Nazi fringe) could possibly find Hitler a sympathetic figure during his bizarre last days. And to presume that it might be somehow dangerous to see him as a human being – well, what does that thought imply about the self-confidence of a stable, liberal democracy? Hitler was, after all, a human being, even if an especially obnoxious, detestable specimen. We well know that he could be kind and considerate to his secretaries, and with the next breath show cold ruthlessness, dispassionate brutality, in determining the deaths of millions. Of all the screen depictions of the F├╝hrer, even by famous actors, such as Alec Guinness or Anthony Hopkins, this is the only one which to me is compelling. Part of this is the voice. Ganz has Hitler's voice to near perfection. It is chillingly authentic.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

especially obnoxious

I've never heard anyone describe Hitler as obnoxious before. Technically accurate, but still...

Anonymous said...

If it were possible to rank the world leaders of WW2 by dick size Hitler would be smallest. I bet Churchill was packing though.